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How often have you played the Hoffmeister concerto, how often have you performed it in the first round of auditions? You can stop and count, I have time. And how is practicing it? Can you still practice it or do you feel like fainting when you hear the word Hoffmeister? Not to speak of practicing th...

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You're not really getting into a flow state when you practice? After one or two hours you're mentally and physically exhausted? It could be because you're stopping the flow in your body unknowingly: by holding your breath.

Breathing is the single most important thing to take care of when you're practicing.

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10 year old Szofi ist new at school, and her greatest wish is to sing in the school choir. She always loved to sing, and in the choir there is that nice girl from her new class, and that's great, because otherwise not many people have been noticing her yet.

And then there is the choir teacher... she is so sweet and patient, in every rehearsal, so very enthusiastic, that the choir has already been awarded several prizes. What a great honour for a "small" school choir! What an honour and joy to be a part of it and sing there. Of course she is on board!

But after the first rehearsal Szofi has to realize that the actions of the conductor aren't so inspiring after all... should she say something or remain silent?

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The language of piano is harmony and it's expected of piano players to move between keys as if they moved between rooms in their home.

All piano players can learn to think in harmony and conquer the keyboard. From the very beginning.

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Why Christian Tetzlaff's statements are important and what it all has to do with resonance.

This week, an interview with Christian Tetzlaff in Strings Magazine caused a little sensation on the internet.

Concert violinist Tetzlaff answers the question, what he would tell today's young generation of violinists. His answers compounded can be understood as the guidelines for a free musician, for whom career and technique are viewed as elements of a whole: in service of the music, in service of the emotion and communication.

"Live a musical life without armor" is the title of the interview. For Tetzlaff, this is about doing things that allow musicians to experience music - not through practicing the whole day but by sight-reading with fellow musicians, playing in the orchestra, living your everyday life. For Tetzlaff, teachers should be teaching music rather than violin; sadly, many instructors remain at the level of instrumental how-to and don't go beyond that.

Also, as a musician you aren't there to follow the composer's will only, but to add your own experience, emotion, to bring everything that you are into the music. "You have to make it your own", says Tetzlaff. To show yourself on stage just how you are, without protection, without armor, without hiding.

The duality of a musician's life

It's the eternal duality of the musician - to want it (practice, rehearsal, preparation) and at the same time to let go of the results, not to want it. When the way we act, the music can develop "by itself": these are the greatest moments for artists and audience. That's what we all wish for, and for which we all work.

Because we know: it's not enough anymore to play well. Something more is required of us. At the same time, the pressure on young (and not so young) concert soloists has risen very high. How to withstand, how to stand out?

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On the video you see her withdrawing her shoulders. The first bars of the d-minor piano concerto by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart are sounding. Pires, whose facial expressions embody different emotions at the same time - from shame over to desperation to decisive - rests her head on her arm at the piano....

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The most beautiful conducting gesture in the world

He had the most beautiful conducting gesture in the world, and he was my choral conductor for five years. When you sing together on average 120 times a year, you accumulate quite a few experiences - one concert in particular stands out in my memory.

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"Piano playing is actually not so difficult. You just have to touch the right key at the right time."
- Johann Sebastian Bach

If at all, these words bear witness to the sense of humour of Johann Sebastian Bach. What he says, sounds sensible, albeit there is a catch.

It's not to be taken seriously.

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